Thai Coffee – Everything You Need To Know

Everything You Need To Know About Thai Coffee - Coffee Culture Thailand

Whether you are a coffee fanatic or simply love trying new coffee every now and then, you would be happy to get familiar with coffee produced in one of the countries n South East Asia – Thailand. For the past two decades, Thailand gained popularity among coffee drinkers, and coffee production, thanks to its suitable weather conditions. If you ever traveled to Thailand, you should know that the northern part of the country is famous for arabica coffee plantations, whereas the Southern part of the country has been developing robusta coffee plantations. In this blog, we will cover everything you need to know about Thai coffee, so pour yourself a hot cup of coffee and get comfortable, as our journey will be memorable.

Before you go on your expedition for coffee in Thailand, here is the essential table of content that will help you to navigate through the blog:

Disclaimer: As the blog & coffee gets addictive, make sure to control your emotions, while you will be reading this article.? 

“Is Thai Coffee Good?” – one of the most searched question on google. Well it really comes down to what type of coffee do you like? There are so many different flavors that answering this question is really not that simple. Afterall if you like a non sour coffee and you ended up trying a Thai coffee that has a fruitty/acidic taste note then of course the answer to your question “is Thai coffee good” would be absolutely not! 

However! If you were to find a non sour coffee in Thailand then the answer would be YES! IT’S DELICIOUS! You see where I am getting at?


One of the best thing about Thailand is that there is such a large variety of coffee produced in Thailand. While there are two main types that are currently being grown in Thailand: Robusta coffee and Arabica coffee. There are so many different profiles available due to 1. The elevation the coffees are grown on 2. The roasting capabilities to pull out certain flavours and taste not profiles. So to overall answer your question “Is thai coffee any good?” yes it is. But don’t take it from us, see below. 


From an unknow entity in the coffee world, Thailand is now regarded as one of the top three coffee-producing countries in Asia. Why the sudden growing interest in Thai coffee? Chiang Mai in Northern Thailand is largely responsible for the success. Famous for Buddhist temples and coffee, Chiang Mai boasts Thailand’s greatest arabica production, contributing to a large part of the over half a million 60-kilogram bags of coffee that Thailand can export in a year. Chiang Mai’s contribution to the coffee boom can be traced back to 1969 when King Bhumibol Adulyadej created the Tha Royal Project to incentivize investment in sustainable industries like coffee growing. People fell in love with Thailand coffee due to its sustainable roots and unique taste.

Now, coffee fans from all over the world are adding Thailand as their next coffee destination. Just to try a homemade cup of several local Thai coffee roasters’s savory coffee blends.

Coffee Types Grown In Thailand

Coffee is one of Thailand’s major cultivation with Chiang Mai as the coffee capital of Thailand. It is here that the Thai coffee history started, around 50+ years ago. With the help of the Thai royal family and government-sponsored programs encouraged farmers to grow and harvest coffee. An ideal environment for farming coffee and coffee economy support from the government, Thailand’s coffee production and economy is on a continuous boom. With two main types of coffee in Thailand: Thai Robusta coffee and Thai Arabica. With several other local farmers testing on Decaf coffee, Liberica coffee beans and more. 

Thai coffee is similar to Vietnamese coffee in many ways. However, the improved quality, roast profile, and taste make it more popular than its Vietnamese cousin. But because Thailand has a beautiful balance between the Robusta and arabica coffee, making it possiblem to offer such a large variety. 

Oh absolutely! Coffee shops in Thailand is more commonly found than that of 7-eleven marts. If you take a stroll on the road in a city, whether it is bangkok, phuket, chiang mai or any other large city in Thailand, you’ll find at least one coffee shop. 

From small street side coffee stalls set up on just a single table and a coffee sign, to movable coffee carts (in Thailand they are built with side cars), to beautifully designed specialty cafes. The offer is endless, making coffee hopping journey in Thailand a never ending experience. Overal some of the best coffee shops in Thailand can be found in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Pattaya, Samui and Hua Hin

The down side of the increasing amount of coffee shops in Thailand is that it becomes harder and harder to find authentic old-style Thai coffee vendors. Coffee vendors, where super strong and very sweet coffee are poured into a plastic bag full of ice and served with a straw. 

Every coffee lover has a go-to brand. For some, it’s the time-tested grocery store stock. For others, a boutique roaster in your local area and for others the dependable online coffee stores where you can easily buy your coffee online with delivery service straight to your door. But since we drink coffee once (maybe three to four times like me, Susan) a day, it’s easy to get burnt out sipping the same old cup of joe. 

Luckily, the coffee scene in Thailand is vast and varied, and there is always a new coffee brand waiting for their turn to fill your next cup. Find them easily online here with coffee categories covering everything from light roast, medium roast, dark roast, french roast coffee to decaffeinated coffee beans.

Typically the traditional Thai coffee are made from instant coffee. Usually they are made by putting the coffee into a large filter bag. Then poured over by boiling hot water, the coffee is then poured through the filter bag multiple times. Producing a very very strong, bitter black coffee. Which is why Thais do not typically drink black coffee, its just way too bitter for their preference. Leading to the heavily added sugar or condensed milk and evaporated milk.

Creating 4 very classic Thai coffee drinks you might want to try out: 
  • Thai iced coffee (Kafe Yen) – This is the most popular among all types of coffee in Thailand. Sweet, creamy and most commonly found throughout Thailand. 
  • Oliang – a traditional Thai iced coffee with sugar. While Oliang is sweet, it has no milkiness or creaminess to help smooth out the bitterness. Therefore, you might find the coffee bitterness and aroma more prominent. So it’s definitely not for the faint of heart. 
  • “Front-wheel lift” or Yok Lor Oliang – This is a variation of Oliang where milk is added to the black coffee, making it more milky/creamy.
  • Kopi – If you are from Singapore or Malaysia, you are already familiar with the term Kopi. This is basically black coffee mixed with condensed milk. The Asian version of a simple Latte.

And that brings us to the end of our guide to Thai coffee and everything you need to know. While each topic of course has way more information and goes into further depth. We prefer to go straight to the point and keep the important parts. If there are any questions about Thai coffee you’d like to know please feel free to chat with us or drop us a message on LINE or messenger

P.S. If you’re wondering where the best place to buy Thai coffee beans or where to buy ground coffee in Thailand, you’ll want to check out Thailand’s first and largest online coffee store – COFFEE CULTURE THAILAND. Coffee Culture Thailand was founded in 2020 amidst the pandemic. Holding an extensive collection of different local coffee roasters in Thailand, with a mission to uplift Thai coffee.

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